Saturday, May 12, 2012

Less than 24 hours later I want to crawl into a hole and die.

I don't know if making this house a home is possible. I don't know if it's possible with these kids. I asked Rambo Bug Boy (RBB) to wipe out the inside of a gross kitchen drawer for me, using a damp warm sponge. I took the drawer out and set it on the ground so that he wouldn't lean on it and break it. He turned it over and stepped on it, and of course his foot went straight through the bottom. He wasn't being bad; he thought the drawer would support his weight. I can't even tell you how many things in this house are messed up because apparently it never occurs to ANY of my kids that they aren't for jumping/hanging/standing on. Doors, drawers, cabinets, couches, bookshelves, chairs...I tell them, consistently, but they don't get it. Is that normal?

So another kitchen drawer is broken and useless. In addition to most of the pantry shelves, the baking cabinet shelves, and all of the lower cabinet doors, which hang crooked. I've got to be doing something wrong that my kids still think this house is indestructible. That and they've got to be dumb as posts to not have figured it out yet themselves. After all, it keeps breaking.

Now they are all in the van waiting for me to take them to breakfast and a park. The plan was to take them to the farmers market, then swimming, then Costcos, but that's not going to happen. We got up too late for the market, it's too cold to swim, and without breakfast I'm not going to risk Costcos.

I want to send them all away for a month and work on the house the whole time they are gone. That's the only way I can see accomplishing anything. After all, what good are babysteps forward with all around you everything is taking great leaps backward?

Friday, May 11, 2012

Disappointment to Re-motivation


This is not what I was hoping to type today.

That house, the mini homestead, isn't going to work out. Even though we know we can afford it, the landlord isn't convinced, and we really can't blame him. We look awful on paper, and it isn't unusual for us to wonder how we are making it ourselves.

Anyhow, we won't be moving this year. I allowed myself to be thoroughly depressed for two days. I'd really set my heart on moving. I'd really swallowed my friend's assurances that her landlord would totally go for this idea. I'd spent a lot of time thinking about how we were going to set up the new house, what we were going to do with the land, getting excited about getting rid of so much of our stuff... I should stop typing this now because I might get all depressed again. I don't have time for that.

So here we are. In this epitome of wasted space and inefficient energy use, with 15 year old smelly torn up carpeting, broken window screens/doors/garbage disposal/garage door, and ugly unwashable wall colors. Filled to the brim with junk we've collected, thinking "this" would be the item which would finally turn this "temporary shelter" into a "home." Yep. I'm depressed again. Give me a few minutes to regain my motivation. Again. Re-re-gain?

A big part of the reason I wanted to move was so I didn't have to face this place again. I could start from scratch. That's not going to happen, so what is going to happen, is I'm tackling this place. We've been here 5 years and I've only sporadically tried to make it "home" because I kept thinking we were going to move. I still think we will move soon, but I'm not going to live like this anymore. Getting this place nice is going to be a huge job. Huge. And some things I simply won't be able to do (ie: carpets). But I'm going to start treating this place like people I love live here. 'Cause they do, and I've been cheating them of my best homemaking by putting it all into my dreams and pinterest boards. My son was 7 years old when we moved here, and now he's 12. That's a HUGE chunk of the time he will be spending with us, and what have I been teaching him and his siblings? That they don't deserve a home unless it's MY dream home.


Enough. The garage door will get fixed. Walls will get washed/painted. Stuff will be tossed, lots and lots of stuff. Pictures will be hung, cobwebs swept, and I'm going to look into painting my own drop cloths and using them to cover up the carpets. Also...I'm thinking rabbits. We can't have chickens here, but meat rabbit hutches should be do-able in the back yard. Container gardening, since digging up the yard doesn't work so well here. Little bits at a time, no biting off more than I can chew. I can't, shouldn't, won't spend a lot of money on this place, but a little here and there will be worth while. Maybe someday I can actually have friends over again.

Meanwhile, I will also be saving up for our bit of land, someday.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Incremental Steps (Still Scary)

When I first decided to do a blog about "achieving our homesteading dreams" I was working on coming up with a 3 to 5 year plan: saving money, paying off debts, working together with like-minded friends, and culminating in a 5-10 acre tract of land on which we built our own straw-bale home. That still may be what happens. However, before I even wrote my first post, an unexpected opportunity was offered to us. A friend of a friend has been renting-to-own for the past 3 years, but circumstances are forcing her out of the house and off the land. She offered us all of her built up equity, if we would just move in a take over the payments. We just had to decided in about 4 days. This is not our dream home/land she is offering us on a platter (house is a bit too small, land is a bit too small, we are a bit unprepared timing-wise) but there are a lot of advantages to consider. We would be out of this house, which we have rented for 5 years, in the middle of a very suburban subdivision with a small yard and difficult neighbors. We could have farm animals and a large garden on the offered 1.5 acres. It would be cheaper to live there, provided, of course, that you aren't counting the cost of a large garden and more animals. I just sent the application off to the landlord. I'm nervous, but it will be okay, whatever happens. We'll either stay here and continue with our initial plan, or take an unexpected step both toward and off-set from our dreams. LOL Life is funny. Let's see how this ride goes.